Today we are talking about the all-new Altra Olympus 5. This is the big update from version 4, which has been out for over two years. I know a lot of people are excited to get the new version of the Olympus and we are as well. This shoe is due out in July of 2022, but like many things, some dates have been shuffled around, so it would not shock me if this shoe did not come out until mid-July, even later than July.

What is the Purpose of the Altra Olympus 5?

This is Altra’s most premium, most cushioned, most protective trail model. In fact, many people use this shoe as just a hiking shoe because it is such a big bulky protective shoe, and it also weighs a good bit (Men’s: 12.2 oz / 345 g). So if you are somebody who is looking to do just some fast quick miles on the trail, it might be more bells and whistles than you actually need, but if you are looking for a shoe that is going to give you long mile protection walking, hiking tough terrain this could be a really good option for you.

All Altra shoes are a zero-drop, meaning that the heel and toe are on a level platform. They all have a rounded foot-shaped toe box. Compared to other Altra shoes, the Olympus has a very wide rounded toe box. In fact, the whole shoe is wide all the way around.

Altra has started using different terminology to dictate how wide a shoe is compared to other models. This is what is called an “original fit.” Sadly, there are not that many shoes on the Altra catalog now that are considered original fit. Of all the Altra shoes out here, this is your widest model, which is also great for people who are used to that traditional old-school Altra. I always say that clown shoe fit that is almost obnoxiously wide. The width and fit of this shoe feels great, especially if you’re accustomed to needing that kind of room. The Olympus will certainly accommodate you.

What is new about the Altra Olympus 5?

Some of the changes that we liked right away compared to previous versions is the design of the outsole. This shoe has sort of like a y in the spine what this is going to do is help add a little bit of stability to it. Most trail shoes are just sort of classified as “trail,” you don’t see a whole lot of like neutral versus stability options. There are a few trail shoes out there from brands like Asics that make a true “stability trail” shoe, but almost everything else you see out there is just labeled under “trail.” These shoes don’t have that posting and they don’t have guide rails because most time if you’re on the trail, the undulation of the road doesn’t allow you to be in a position where you need to have sort of that medial posting or push back if you have a collapsing arch. The unevenness that you’re on is going to kind of throw that off.

But the updated Olympus has features that classify to be more of a stability trail shoe, they don’t list it as a stability trail shoe. Altra have added a little bit of extra support through the spine area here through sort of the butt of the shoe. This shoe is designed so that when you step down to almost sort of flare out and give a little bit of extra stability.

They’ve also increased a little bit of the walls on each side. If you are looking at it here on our medial side, this goes up a bit higher than our previous version. It is not necessarily a guide rail like we have seen on other shoes, but it is higher to give a little more protection. Again, they are not billing this as a stability shoe but when you put it on, it does feel like it is trying to hold you from any type of pronation.

The other thing with this shoe is if you are somebody who always wears an orthotic and no matter what you say, I do not care, Steve, I am always going to put an orthotic in my shoe, I’m always going to make sure that I put something in here because I have collapsing arches, I got a history of plantar fasciitis, whatever that reason may be that you want to add extra support to the shoe, compared to other trail models out there, this has a pretty nice deep instep into it so you could pop out the insole and you could add your own orthotic to it, and it will not make you feel like you are stepping out of the shoe as you might come in some other shoes with a shallow heel cup it.

Speaking of the heel cup, which is one thing they really increased on this. My Altra rep called this sort of like a soft, lazy boy chair for your Achilles. When you compare that to your previous model there, it is true. It is hard to see it on there, but you can feel it. It is way more cushioned.

It goes up taller they have a little even more of a hold-on clip here that you can use to pop in and off your foot easier or even to hang your shoe. One of the main reasons they did it was to give something that you can if you are hauling a pack if you were, let us say, you were traversing the Appalachian Trail. You could hang the shoe up on your pack and let it dry a little bit super nice, silly little thing. Still, it does make a nice difference trying to get it on and off, and if you are trying to think about drying your shoe, it is a nice little added touch. Of course, because this is an Altra shoe with trail features, it has your Velcro back here. It has your clip for your gator trap, so some of the things we are used to seeing on the Altra trail line are nice here.

Olympus 5 has a Vibram Outsole

The version has a Vibram outsole. this is going to be your stickiest grippiest outsole to it. It is a mega grip from your Vibram outsole. This will give you protection on wet roads, dry roads, wet trails, dry trails, a little bit of everything. If you are coming down, you need a little extra grip. This will give it to you compared to other Altra models that do not have the Vibram outsole.

What is the difference between the Altra Timp 4 and Olympus 5?

Here is, in blue the new Timp 4. The Timp has a Mega-Trax outsole not a Vibram like the Olympus 5. The Timp has an ego midsole where the Olympus 5 does not. This is interesting because they are both classified as max cushion trail shoes, but they each have their own characteristics that kind of have different audiences.

Timp 4 (Left) vs Olympus 5

The Timp 4 (30mm) has a lower stack height than the Olympus (33mm). The Timp has the ego midsole which means it’s going to be a bit more responsive than the Olympus. So that is why the Olympus, to me because it, does way more than a Timp because it has a little bit more beefiness, I love this shoe much more for longer miles or people hiking. We have customers coming in here because we are not too far away from the Appalachian trail, people are doing through hikes or doing, you know, the JFK 50 miler, for example, and you want something to be on your feet for a long time, having a shoe that has the great Vibram outsole, the big cushion to it, the taller stack height, and the wider toe box is going to be much more of your long-distance friend than something like another max cushion shoe, but that is cut narrower, a little bit different midsole, and a little bit different outsole.

Check out our Timp 4 Review 

If you are looking to compare the best of both worlds, of course, you might be looking for something like the new Altra Mont Blanc Boa, which has the Vibram outsole that we have in the Olympus, but it has an EGO Probe midsole that is going to give you that bouncy, soft, responsive ride.

Olympus V5 (Left) vs V4

Sizing of Olympus 5

One of the questions we get asked the most in the shop when it comes to Altra shoes is how does it fit how is it fit to compare to previous models? As we talked about earlier, the Olympus 5 is an original fit. This is the widest of the wide when it comes to Altra shoes. The Olympus also lengthwise to me, fits very similar to its previous version. I was an  11.5 on version 4, and I was 11.5 on this one, and my foot felt just fine. It feels like a lot of what they were using for sizing from the previous ones will be the same. Just trust your instincts which you have been before. You should feel pretty confident ordering that same size on version five.

The material on this upper has a bit more flex to it, and it is a little bit softer. You did not have as much play on v4 as in v5. Really if you are somebody who needs that wide shoe, this should be a good option.

It does only come in one width, though. If you are somebody who needs the super-wide (like a 4E),  there is a Lone Peak Wide available that traditionally fits more like a 4E. I would say the standard Olympus 5 fits more like a 2E+, which is still quite wide. Still, there is a wide option in a Lone Peak that would technically be a little wider than this, but for most people looking for that traditional original fit Altra, the Olympus will be a great option for you. It should be a good shoe for your hiking, running, and long-distance stuff.

Gore-Tex and High Top Versions Available

This shoe will also come in a Gore-Tex version and a high-top version. There will be some updates on those as well. They should be coming around July around the same time.


I hope that gave you some information on the new Olympus 5. If you are interested in purchasing this shoe or anything else, visit our website and use promo code, RunMoore, and you will save 10%, and we will ship shoes out for free thank you so much for checking out our channel, and as always, have a great day.

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